Eddy Cue promises Apple will fight fake news

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Eddy-Cue-Recode
Apple doesn't have a fix, Cue says, but it is working on it.
Photo: Recode

Eddy Cue has promised that Apple is working on a solution to keep fake news out of the Apple News app for iOS.

During an interview on Monday night, Cue said companies in the technology industry are responsible for ensuring their services are free from hoax stories.

Although fake news has been a problem for many years, it became a real concern during the recent presidential election when false stories on hot topics like crime and immigration went viral on Facebook and other social networks.

In the run up to the election, analysis from BuzzFeed revealed that fake news was outperforming real news on Facebook. Stories claiming Pop Francis endorsed Donald Trump and that Hillary Clinton sold weapons to ISIS gained significantly more clicks than genuine stories.

With around 62 percent of Americans now using Facebook as a primary news source, these stories like these have been blamed for swaying voters.

Even Trump’s administration was duped. Adviser Kellyanne Conway said the president’s travel ban was a response to terrorist acts like the “Bowling Green massacre” — an bogus event fabricated by fake news outlets.

Apple doesn’t have an answer to combating fake news “by any means,” Cue told Recode last night, but the company is working to prevent it spreading via Apple News.

“We wanted Apple News to be available to everyone, but we want to vet and make sure that the news providers are legitimate,” he said. “We’re very concerned about all of the news items and the clickbait from that standpoint, and that driving a lot of the news coverage.”

“We’re trying to do some things in Apple News, we’re learning from that and we need to share that together as an industry and improve it.”

Now that the vast majority of news is read “through devices, and through services that are provided through those devices,” Cue believes it is the responsibility of the tech companies to fight fake news. He also called for the entire industry to workshop a solution.

Apple CEO Tim Cook shares the same view. During an interview with Good Morning Britain earlier this month, he said fake news is “killing people’s minds.”